IMDb > The Game of Their Lives (2005)
The Game of Their Lives
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The Game of Their Lives (2005) More at IMDbPro »

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Popularity: ?
Down 5% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writers (WGA):
Geoffrey Douglas (book)
Angelo Pizzo (written by)
View company contact information for The Game of Their Lives on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 April 2005 (USA) See more »
The match against England in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on June 19, 1950 was "the game of their lives". See more »
Based on a true story, this film tells the tale of the 1950 US soccer team who, against all odds, beat England 1 - 0 in the city of Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Although no US team has ever won a World Cup title, this story is about the family traditions and passions which shaped the lives of the players who made up this team of underdogs. | Add synopsis »
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(19 articles)
Film Review: ‘My All-American’
 (From Variety - Film News. 12 November 2015, 12:00 PM, PST)

The Callow Way – Why Football And Film Don’t Mix
 (From Flickeringmyth. 14 June 2015, 2:10 AM, PDT)

Wes Bentley opens up about drugs past
 (From The Guardian - Film News. 2 August 2013, 3:31 AM, PDT)

User Reviews:
We got Game! See more (46 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Gerard Butler ... Frank Borghi

Wes Bentley ... Walter Bahr

Jay Rodan ... Frank 'Pee Wee' Wallace

Gavin Rossdale ... Stanley Mortensen

Costas Mandylor ... Charlie 'Gloves' Columbo

Louis Mandylor ... Gino Pariani

Zachery Ty Bryan ... Harry Keough (as Zachery Bryan)

Jimmy Jean-Louis ... Joe Gaetjens

Richard Jenik ... Joe Maca
Nelson Vargas ... John 'Clarkie' Souza
Craig Hawksley ... Walter Giesler

Bill Smitrovich ... Admiral Higgins

Patrick Stewart ... Older Dent McSkimming

Terry Kinney ... Dent McSkimming

John Rhys-Davies ... Bill Jeffrey (as John Rhys Davies)

Maria Bertrand ... Rosemary Borghi
Marilyn Dodds Frank ... Fara Borghi
Thomas Charles Simmons ... Joe Calcaterra (as Thomas C. Simmons)
Julie Granata ... Janet Capiello

Mike Bacarella ... Silvio Capiello
Tia Marrie ... Alma Flores (as Tia Marie)
Ricardo Gutierrez ... Salvador Flores

Mike Nussbaum ... Johnny Abruzzo
Brooke Edwards ... Fiora Abruzzo
Nino Da Silva ... Eddie Sousa
John Harkes ... Ed McIlvenny
Sal E. Polizzi ... The Priest (as Rev. Msgr. Sal E. Polizzi)
Adriana Fazio ... The Widow

Deborah Corday ... Woman
S.G. Stratigos ... Referee (Simpkins)

Tom Brainard ... Lieutenant Austin
Gus V. Torregrossa ... The Barber of the Hill

Joe Erker ... "Chubby" Lyons
Derk Droze ... Bobby Annis
Brad Coburn ... Bobby Ravisi
Amanda Kennedy ... Adriana Ravisi
Tim Vickery ... BBC Announcer World Cup Game
Darren Michael Marold ... Simpkins Player
Whitney Wheelock ... Goalie
Sean Wheelock ... Sportscaster
Walter Bahr ... Himself
Frank Borghi ... Himself
Harry Keough ... Himself
Gino Pariani ... Himself
John Souza ... Himself (as John 'Clarkie' Souza)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Jaxon Stanford ... NY Press Photographer

Stephen Alexander ... Sideline Cameraman (uncredited)

James E. Ash ... All-Star Game Head Referee (uncredited)

Patrick Belics ... Grocery Delivery Boy (uncredited)

Vanna Bonta ... Italian Bride (uncredited)
Ian Carrington ... English Coach (uncredited)

Shawn I. Chevalier ... Wedding Guest (uncredited)

Bryan Deehring ... Soccer Player #1 (uncredited)
Kenn Drescher ... Reporter (uncredited)

Pamela Fischer ... Woman in Press Box (uncredited)

Rosemary Garris ... Fan (uncredited)
Todd Gwin ... Intense Fan (uncredited)

Rick Kain ... Referee (uncredited)
Paul Lancia ... Simpkins #11 (uncredited)
Brenna McDonough ... Woman in Press Box (uncredited)
Rob Miley ... Simpkins #14 (uncredited)
Alex Moore ... Sports Reporter (uncredited)
Sarah Maria Newman ... Wedding Singer (uncredited)
Candace Nicol ... Wedding Guest (uncredited)
Paul M. Nolan ... Score Keeper Assistant (uncredited)

Chelsea O'Toole ... Soccer Fan (uncredited)

Eddie Perino ... Supporting (uncredited)
Patrick Rooney ... Jeremy Wellfleet (uncredited)

Riley Schmidt ... Simpkins Ford Soccer Player (uncredited)
Dave Schuetz ... Spectator at the Fence (uncredited)

Gary Sedlock ... St. Louis Spectator Behind Coaches / Spectator in New York (uncredited)

Sean Skyler ... Soccer Fan (uncredited)

Deborah S. Smith ... Soccer Player Wife (uncredited)

Tymica Spiller ... Spectator (uncredited)

Towanda Underdue ... Soccer Player Wife (uncredited)

Jani Vorwerk ... Hotel Guest (uncredited)

Directed by
David Anspaugh 
Writing credits
Geoffrey Douglas (book)

Angelo Pizzo (written by)

Produced by
Howard Baldwin .... producer
Karen Elise Baldwin .... producer (as Karen Baldwin)
Ira Deutchman .... co-producer
Tereza Gonzalez .... executive producer
Olivia Guimaraes .... line producer: Brazil (as Olívia Guimarães Castro)
Kevin Halloran .... line producer: Washington, D.C.
Billy Higgins .... line producer
William J. Immerman .... executive producer
Greg Johnson .... producer
Nick Morton .... co-producer
Peter Newman .... producer
Ginger T. Perkins .... producer
Angelo Pizzo .... co-producer
Original Music by
William Ross 
Cinematography by
Johnny E. Jensen (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Ian Crafford 
Lee Grubin 
Bud S. Smith  (as Bud Smith)
M. Scott Smith  (as Scott Smith)
Casting by
Cathy Sandrich Gelfond 
Amanda Mackey  (as Amanda Mackey Johnson)
Production Design by
Linda Burton 
Art Direction by
Michael Atwell 
Set Decoration by
David Smith 
Costume Design by
Jane Anderson 
Makeup Department
Sherri Bramlett .... key hair stylist: Washington, D.C.
Deborah K. Dee .... key makeup artist (as Deborah Dee)
Barbara Lacy .... makeup dept head: D.C.
Maria Lucia Mattos .... hair stylist: Brazil (as Maria Lúcia Mattos)
Vicky Phillips .... key hair stylist
Vavá Torres .... makeup artist: Brazil
Adruitha Lee .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Theresa Miller .... additional hair stylist (uncredited)
Eileen Sazama .... additional makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Lisa Dennis .... post-production supervisor
Billy Higgins .... unit production manager
Anne Johns .... production supervisor: Brazil
Joel C. Peterson .... production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Frank Ferro .... first assistant director: Washington D.C.
Anne Pinheiro Guimarães .... first assistant director
Stephanie Lovell .... second second assistant director: Washington, DC
Tatiana Maciel .... second second assistant director
Bradley Morris .... second second assistant director
Barbara M. Ravis .... second assistant director
Rafael Salgado .... second assistant director
Stacy Schrader .... dga trainee
Gigi Soares .... second assistant director
Chris Stoia .... first assistant director
Kurt Uebersax .... second assistant director: Washington DC
Art Department
Chris Benson .... on-set dresser
Mike Carrillo .... property master
Cat Dawson .... property assistant (as Cat Cacciatore)
Benjamin Edelberg .... set designer
Daniel Flaksman .... stand-by art director
Greg Goad .... set dresser
Isabel Gouvêa .... art producer
Amy Graham .... set dresser
Juliana Guedes .... art department assistant
Emily Haack .... on-set props assistant
Daniel Hirsh .... art department intern
Brent Jaimes .... set dresser
Scott Jenkins .... graphic artist
Bobby Kirk .... set dresser
Paul Knubley .... set dresser
Oswaldo Lioi .... set designer
Tiago Marques Teixeira .... assistant set designer
David McCahan .... swing gang
Scot Terry .... conceptual artist
William Tonn .... set dresser
Jim Tudor .... set dresser
Pedro von Tiesenhausen .... assistant property master
Michele Waldfogel .... art department coordinator: St Louis
Michele Waldfogel .... clearance and research
Clark Woodman .... assistant property master
Kelsey Lapoint .... on-set painter (uncredited)
Renata Otomura .... assistant art department coordinator (uncredited)
Chris Shader .... on-set props assistant (uncredited)
David Tennenbaum .... set designer (uncredited)
Sound Department
Richard L. Anderson .... sound effects editor
Chris Carpenter .... re-recording mixer
Mike Chock .... supervising sound editor
Robert Eber .... production sound mixer (as Bob Eber)
Avram D. Gold .... dialog & adr editor
Doc Kane .... adr mixer
Shawn Ian Kerkhoff .... assistant sound editor
Andy Koyama .... re-recording mixer
Mark A. Mangini .... supervising sound editor
Darrin Mann .... foley mixer
Bill Meadows .... sound recordist
Robert Morrisey .... assistant sound editors
Chris Navarro .... adr recordist
Rob Nokes .... additional sound recordist
Rob Nokes .... voiceover recordist
Ralph Osborn .... adr editor
Erin Michael Rettig .... sound engineer
Kira Roessler .... adr supervisor
Nick Shaffer .... sound effects recordist
Andy Sisul .... assistant sound editor
Greg Steele .... adr mixer
David Williams .... dialogue editor
Special Effects by
Mauricio Couto Bevilaqua .... special effects technician
Lisa Reynolds .... special effects assistant
Bob Shelley .... special effects coordinator
Dave Rutherford .... special effects crew (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Brian Corpus .... technical operations manager: Pacific Title and Art Studio
Brian Hanable .... digital effects compositor: Pacific Title
Nicky Ladas .... IT manager
Nicky Ladas .... film scanner operator
Kim Pearce .... senior systems administrator
Sérgio Schmid .... visual effects supervisor
David Stump .... visual effects supervisor
James D. Tittle .... visual effects coordinator: Pacific Title
Bob Wiatr .... digital effects compositor: Pacific Title
Camera and Electrical Department
Nicolas Amato .... electrician
Bill Brao .... camera operator
Toti Cardoso .... electrician
Thomas S. Ciciura .... assistant camera: St. Louis
Jason Cleaveland .... grip
Dan Gartner .... rigging electrician
Lonnie S. Gatlin .... best boy electric
Lonnie S. Gatlin .... rigging gaffer
James Goldman .... film loader
Ted Gregg .... electrician
Ted Gregg .... grip
Tim Hawn .... rigging grip
Marty Hechinger .... electrician
Tim Hennessy .... camera loader: Washington D.C.
Scott Inge .... first assistant camera: "b" camera: Washington D.C.
John Johnson .... still photographer
Bob E. Krattiger .... gaffer
Dave Kube .... rigging electrician
Trevor Loomis .... key first assistant camera
Ulisses Malta Jr. .... electrician
David L. Merrill .... key grip
Charles 'Chaz' Norcross .... best boy grip
Alexandre Ramos .... first assistant camera: "b" camera
Adam Reisz .... grip
Eric Ritter .... gang boss
Scott Ronnow .... second assistant camera
Martina Rupp .... second assistant camera
David D. Scott .... video engineer
John Sennott .... electrician
Paulo Souza .... gaffer
Jack Thomas .... gang boss
Gisele Tolomelli .... grip translator
Jerry Wheat .... electrician
William D. Wynn .... dolly grip
Matt Zschoche .... electrician
Aaron Judlowe .... electrician (uncredited)
R. Samul .... electrician (uncredited)
Casting Department
Jane Alderman .... additional casting: Chicago
Ruy Brito .... additional casting: Brazil
Sig De Miguel .... casting associate: US
Carrie Houk .... additional casting: St. Louis (as Carrie Houck)
Caitlin McKenna .... voice casting
Olivia Rabacov .... additional casting: Brazil
Mônica Teixeira .... additional casting: Brazil (as Monica Teixeira)
Wendy Weidman .... casting associate: US
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Tony Cusumano .... production assistant: costumes, St. Louis
Deb Dalton .... costume supervisor: Washington D.C.
Erin Haigh .... costume department intern
Jennifer Losi .... costume production assistant
Elaine McGhee .... set costumer
Robin Roberts .... key costumer
Roric Ruegsegger .... costume assistant
Michael A. Russell .... costume supervisor
Cricket Vandover .... wardrobe assistant (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Jason Bretz .... assistant editor
Anthony Durazzo .... assistant editor
David Orr .... color timer
Mike Sowa .... digital color timer
Jeff Williams .... assistant editor
Valance Eisleben .... high definition editorial services (uncredited)
Location Management
Cindy Duarte .... location assistant
Daniel V. Kinkade .... location manager
Matthew Dillon Noonan .... location assistant
Bill Parmentier .... location assistant
Music Department
Bruce Babcock .... orchestrator
Johnny Caruso .... music editor
Lindsay Fellows .... music supervisor
Mark Graham .... music librarian
Jim Harrison .... music editor
Lesley Langs .... music editor: temp
Mark McKenzie .... orchestrator
Christopher S. Parker .... music supervisor
Steven L. Smith .... music preparation
Transportation Department
Dan 'the Mayor' Cowden .... transportation
Glenn Korbesmeyer .... driver: transportation department
Tom Phillips .... transportation operations
Other crew
Julia Berreto Kos .... assistant: David Anspaugh, Brazil
Kristine Bochum .... second assistant accountant: post-production
Rebecca Bossen .... dialect coach
Tom Brainard .... soccer player coordinator
Ilana Brakarz .... production assistant
Trisha Burton .... script supervisor
Clara Cardoso .... production intern
Caryn Cheever .... co-first assistant accountant
Tony Cypres .... assistant accountant: Rio de Janeiro
Neil Daly .... athletic instructor
Cris De Arce .... set key production assistant
Larry Donahue .... caterer
Missy Eustermann .... post-production accountant
Gino Falla .... assistant accountant
Stuart Fink .... publicist
Patrick Fisher .... production assistant
Scott Foster .... production assistant: Washington D.C.
Salvatore Frisella .... production assistant (as Michael Frisella)
Kenny Gallagher .... second assistant accountant
Raul Guterres .... production executive
John Harkes .... additional soccer consultant and coach
Amy Hartweger .... production assistant
Keith Hueffmeier .... location department intern
Anne Johns .... production coordinator: St. Louis, MO
C. David Jones .... key set production assistant
Ricardo Karam .... production assistant
Drew Langer .... production assistant
Rick Larsen .... soccer trainer
Heather Midgley .... assistant: David Anspaugh, USA
Tom Nicoll .... production assistant
Tony Niknejadi .... production assistant
Rosemary Orlando .... assistant production coordinator
Patrick Tendai Pfupajena .... production assistant: Washington D.C.
Stephanie Raven .... massage therapist
Vicki Dee Rock .... production executive
Joe Rodriguez .... stand-in: Gerard Butler
Bryan Schmidt .... production assistant: locations
Anne Scott .... first assistant accountant
Andrew J. Stratmann .... production assistant
Steve Theiss .... office production assistant
Lynda Van Damm .... production controller
Drew Vandervelde .... production coordinator: Washington D.C.
Matthew Vitel .... cook
Johnny Weeston .... accounting assistant
Eric Wynalda .... soccer consultant and coach
Jonathan Zurer .... producer: Washington D.C.
Dianne E. Collins .... distribution executive (uncredited)
Michael J. Harker .... completion bond company representative (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"The Miracle Match" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
Rated PG for some mild language and thematic elements
101 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

The film claimed the English player Stan Mortensens scored a hat-trick in a FA Cup Final game 3 years earlier, when it was not to happen for 3 years in the future. This was the famous "Matthews Final" of 1953 named after Mortensen's team mate Stan Matthews, despite Mortensen's hat-trick. This hat-trick is also the first Wembley FA Cup Final hat-trick.See more »
Anachronisms: (at around 3 mins) In the scene on the hotel roof, a modern electronic siren is heard in the background. Sirens in the 1950s were mechanical, and had a very different sound.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in My Big Break (2009)See more »
Choro AntigoSee more »


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16 out of 22 people found the following review useful.
We got Game!, 24 April 2005
Author: callmomrad from United States

O.K., how many of you know that the U.S. beat a heavily-favored English team in a 1950 World Cup Soccer upset? No? No-one? Researching the annals of Sports headlines would not necessarily provide you with the correct information, as the win was so astonishing that the final score of 0-1 was assumed by British journalists to be a typo, and was reported as an English victory of 10-1! And the American Press was too busy covering the onset of the Korean War to pay much attention to the unexpected triumph by a hastily thrown-together U.S. team in a sport which had not yet caught on in the States.

The Game of Their Lives exists to correct this glaring omission in Sports History. David Anspaugh (Hoosiers, Rudy) has directed the quintessential Soccer movie, compelling in its simplicity. Forced by an extremely limited budget to pare this true story down to its bare bones, what emerges is a straight-forward accounting of the American Spirit. On my way to the St. Louis premiere, an African taxi driver put it succinctly, yet enthusiastically, commenting, "Yes! Yes! That's what you Americans do! You make up your minds, pull things together and get things done!" The minimalist story is told in flashback.

Patrick Stewart (Yes, Star Trek) lends his authoritative voice to narration, in the role of Dent McSkimming, the only American reporter to cover the game in Brazil, traveling at his own expense. The setting is primarily "the Hill," a working class Italian-American neighborhood of St. Louis, MO. Against a visually accurate if somewhat nostalgic depiction of post-WW2 optimism and Family Values, the team players selected just weeks before the first round World Cup matches are introduced. It is immediately clear from their devotion to the game that Soccer is a thinly-veiled metaphor for Life for these amateurs. Against this backdrop of a simpler time, a result-oriented male psyche is exposed.

Gerard Butler gives a stand-out performance as Frank Borghi, the steadfast Goalie who is the heart of the team. Mr. Butler has demonstrated incredible range in recent films, going from action hero (Tomb Raider II) to big budget musical (Phantom of the Opera), to independent foreign film (Dear Frankie), to this near-documentary Sports ensemble piece. Just as Borghi is the glue which cements the U.S. team, Butler holds the cast together with an unrelenting presence. His measured determination is balanced against the frustrated pessimism of the titular Team Captain, the less-than-charismatic yet eminently practical Walter Bahr - who went on to coach at Penn State, played by Wes Bentley (American Beauty). Also turning in notable performances are the Mandylor brothers, Costas and Louis, together in a movie for the first time, portraying unrelated players. The personal stories rivet the audience to the chain of events which culminate in the eponymous game.

The match in question was played and shot on location in Brazil. Despite foreknowledge of the outcome, game play is heart-stoppingly exciting and the camera angles place you in the thick of the competition. There is some real Soccer being played on screen! Although I am not an avid Sports fan, I was surprised to find myself on the edge of my seat and carried away by the immediacy of the action. At the premiere in St. Louis, it was heart-warming to see several of the original players in person, including Frank Borghi, being finally honored after 55 years for their remarkable achievement.

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